'Feeding my good wolf' at Outward Bound

Senior students from across the city were selected to go on a 21-day Outward Bound Leadership...
Senior students from across the city were selected to go on a 21-day Outward Bound Leadership course.
Mairehau High School student Maddison Bouma, 17, writes about her experience on the 21-day Takere Outward Bound course

Outward Bound is an experience that will be embedded in my memory forever.

It is truly astonishing what you are capable of when you set your mind to it.

During my time at Outward Bound, a group of strangers became a family within a matter of days.

I kayaked raging river rapids, captained a sailboat through a storm and through the night, and tramped mountains without a marked track.

I also went to the Outward Bound school in Anakiwa, Marlborough, and on a beautiful island solo-camped for three days, and had many other adventures.

Outward Bound allowed me to push myself further than I ever thought possible.

It helped me to better understand what I am capable of, what my limits are and taught me skills that can help me conquer any challenge I face.

One of the most memorable lessons I learnt was about feeding my ‘good wolf’. My instructors taught my watch mates and I a lesson about our reticular activating system by using two wolves. Everyone has a good and a bad wolf. If we feed our bad wolf, by

thinking negative and discouraging thoughts that we can’t do something, our reticular activating system will start to seek and show our mind evidence that these negative things are true. For instance, if you say to yourself that you are always late, your

reticular activating system will make you believe this is true. In turn, you will most likely always be late.

However, if we feed our good wolf by thinking positive and encouraging thoughts and telling ourselves that we can do it, you will.

I have found this good wolf/bad wolf model to be extremely beneficial. It has helped me overcome numerous challenges that I might have struggled with prior to Outward Bound.

I have even had the opportunity to pass on this knowledge to my peers and witness the results of them feeding their good wolf.

Outward Bound truly is a mind-blowing experience and has had a tremendous impact on not just my own life but that of so many others.

Something that has stuck with me are the words of Outward Bound founder Kurt Hahn, who said: “There is more in you.”




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